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It Only Takes One Bad Apple…

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Combating spam, data that goes too far to invade privacy, and plain ol’ bad actors seems to be a priority for social platforms in the wake of the Cambridge Analytica scandal. This task is pretty herculean since spam and invasion of privacy are rarely defined as the same exact thing twice. Hopefully the good guys don’t have to suffer too much as a consequence.

Instagram

Instagram.com: New: Share Feed Posts to Stories

Hallelujah! We finally have an in-app way to publicly re-share content on Instagram. It’s not quite the direct #regram you might have hoped for but it feels like progress. If you want to share someone else’s post from your feed, you can now share it as a sticker in your own Instagram story. Instagram doesn’t make it easy for content to be shared in their app. Finally, if I want everyone I know on Instagram to see my friend’s cute dachshund, I can make that happen without a whole extra app! Someone pointed out that this also makes it much easier to mock people if that’s your style – looking at you, Wendy’s. Read more after the jump…

Laurel vs. Yanny: Brands React

An audio clip took the internet by storm this week, described by many as the second coming of the white and gold or black and blue dress phenomenon.

Some listeners hear the word “laurel” and others are hearing “yanny.” The audio hotly divided the GroundFloor Media and CenterTable offices as we declared our undying loyalties to #TeamLaurel or #TeamYanny. Yesterday, the New York Times even developed a tool to change the frequency of the audio clip so readers can hear both “yanny” and “laurel.”

We thoroughly enjoyed watching different brands and celebrities seize the viral moment to weigh in on the debate throughout the week. Read more after the jump…

Animation Brings Tricky Topic to Life

Since 2015, GroundFloor Media and CenterTable have been proud to work on the Be A Smart Ash campaign. From naming to website development, campaign launch to ongoing education and awareness, the agency and client teams continue to thrive with this highly integrated campaign. With our next step, we will be bringing animation into the fold.

In fact, Be A Smart Ash recently earned the Ragan’s PR Daily 2017 award for Best Location-Based Campaign, adding to national industry kudos earned from the National Recreation and Parks Association (NRPA) late last year.

How to keep up momentum

Three years into the campaign with emerald ash borer (EAB) still not identified in Denver, the team realized that focusing on awareness for the third year in a row could cause consumer fatigue. And with growing awareness about EAB came an increase in questions about just how to combat the pesky pest. So, the team decided 2018 was the perfect time to pivot to an action-oriented message focused on treatment options, just in time for prime treatment season.

Read more after the jump…

Artificial Intelligence in Action

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weekly-reads-artificial-intelligencePredictive intelligence, artificial intelligence and good ol’ human intelligence. This edition of Weekly Reads covers Facebook’s updated ad prediction, Instagram’s new booking functionality, a robot’s successful phone call to reserve a woman’s haircut appointment and more. Happy reading!

Facebook

Social Media Today: Facebook’s Up and Downvote Tools for Comments are Now Available to More Users
Much like the up-and down-voting functionality seen on websites like Reddit, Facebook has rolled out options for promoting content you think is “helpful or insightful,” or, on the other hand, voting down content that “has bad intentions or is disrespectful.” We wonder if this is part of Facebook’s answer to its often-criticized moderation guidelines. Can Facebook users be galvanized to help to police the platform at large? Read more after the jump…

Tips to Troubleshoot a Facebook Link Preview That’s Not Working

I’m going to share one simple but obscure Facebook tool that can help you fix a Facebook link preview that’s not working. Facebook used to allow you to change the image or title of any link preview right on the platform but that is no longer the case. They’re trying to cut down on fake news so they only allow you to change Facebook link previews if you own the content.

Facebook Link Preview Problems

Facebook Link Preview for GroundFloor Media PR Agency Facebook Post on Crisis ResponseLet’s say you tried to share a blog post from your own page on Facebook, but when you looked at the Facebook link preview you saw that the image you used didn’t really look good or maybe it didn’t show up at all. So, you go to your blog post and update the image, then go back to Facebook only to find that the Facebook link preview isn’t working. Or at least it still shows the old image, not the new picture that you recently added to your blog post.

The Cause of Some Facebook Link Preview Problems

The reason the old photo might be showing up in the Facebook link preview, even though you changed it, is that Facebook caches things. This helps the app remain speedy. It means that, in the background, Facebook went and looked at your blog post once, saved what it saw and doesn’t think it needs to go look again because it assumes you haven’t changed anything. What you need to do is tell Facebook to go look again.

The Facebook Sharing Debugger

Facebook Link Preview for GroundFloor Media PR Agency Facebook Post on Crisis Response via Facebook Sharing DebuggerYou can tell Facebook to look again by using the Facebook Sharing Debugger. This is a tool where you can enter the URL you plan to share. It will show you a preview of what Facebook will display. If the photo or other information looks old, just hit the “Scrape Again” button and it should pull in the updated image from your URL.

If you are having trouble getting Facebook to grab the correct image, you can put specific open graph fields that tell it what to grab on your website. This might be something you have to talk to your web developer about. If you’re using WordPress, you can use a plugin to create those fields.

Why Work Toward the Perfect Facebook Link Preview?

It might seem like this is a lot of headache to go through to get the right Facebook link preview, but a good image can drive significantly more audience engagement than one that cuts off the important parts of an image, doesn’t quite fit into the frame or isn’t compelling.

Additional Facebook Link Preview Options

You can try to get your domain verified through Facebook so you can edit Facebook links for your own site on the platform. If you don’t own the website with the content you’re linking to, the only option is to ask them to change their content to get a modified Facebook link preview. You could also post a photo with the link in the post copy, but that’s not highly recommended because it will likely result in fewer people clicking through to the content since that creates a much smaller area for users to click.

A Few Other Benefits of the Facebook Sharing Debugger

The Facebook Sharing Debugger will show you much of the extra information attached to a Facebook link preview. This is useful if you are struggling to view the entire subheading for a Facebook link preview. You can copy and paste the full text of the subheading since sometimes even on a desktop preview that text gets cut off. You can also use this tool to get the direct URL for the image you see in the link preview. This is great if you want to share the link as a link with the same image on Twitter and can’t count on the Twitter preview to populate the image you want.

The Facebook Sharing Debugger lives on the Facebook for Developers section of their website. Thankfully, you don’t have to be a developer or have those kinds of skills to use it.

Lessons Learned While Implementing Google Ad Grants Policy Updates

Earlier this year we outlined a collection of changes to the Google Ad Grants policy affecting more than 35,000 nonprofit organizations – and promptly set out to review all of our nonprofit client accounts for compliance.

What we found were varying degrees of action required within each of our managed nonprofit Ad Grants accounts. Here are a few lessons learned and insights (and maybe a gripe or two) we picked up along the way. Read more after the jump…

The Digital Advertising Landscape Evolves

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From updated video tools and live video features to ad-free experiences and AR-menus, Facebook, Snapchat and Google have all been busy rolling out some interesting new updates this week.

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Digital Trends: Ad-free Facebook access could cost as much as $168 a year

Users might be intrigued by the prospect of an ad-free experience on Facebook, but how will that option impact brands that are targeting their favorite demographics there? Find out what Zuckerberg has up his sleeve with the proposed ad-free subscription tier for Facebook. Read more after the jump…

As Pets Become Top Influencers, Coloradans are Getting in on the Act

Dog at Eiffel TowerAs a huge animal lover, I was intrigued by this recent story on CBS Sunday Morning about how people are making money with their pets as “influencers” on social media. Some of the popular pets represented by The Dog Agency include Ella Bean the Fashion Blogger (a four-pound Chihuahua), Atticus the Hedgehog (profiled in ads for Stainmaster carpet cleaner), and Diddy Kong and Yeti Kong, two monkeys from Miami.

According to the story, using pets as influencers is not just creative – it’s lucrative. “Influencers with millions of followers are getting around $10,000 to $15,000 per piece of sponsored content,” said Loni Edwards, owner of the Dog Agency. “Some campaigns have many pieces of sponsored content.”

In a state that loves its dogs, it seems only natural that Coloradans are getting in on the act.

Read more after the jump…

Facebook’s Algorithm Updates: How We’re Being Affected

Facebook metrics chart with organic and paid data

The ever-changing world of Facebook metrics.

In January, Facebook announced it would be prioritizing content from “friends, family and groups” in our news feeds. Of course, this caused a collective freakout from those of us who manage brand pages.

What does it all mean and how is it affecting reach and engagement for brands? After monitoring and analyzing three months of data, here is what we’ve found with our clients: Read more after the jump…

Denver Post, Chicago Sun-Times Issue Mayday for Journalism

Gil Rudawky at the Rocky Mountain News news desk on the final day of publication


Gil Rudawsky, a city editor at the Rocky Mountain News, is at the news desk on the final day of publication for the paper nearly 10 years ago. In this blog, he revisits the future of journalism.

Leading up to the closure of the Rocky Mountain News in 2009, the mantra among corporate executives engaged in cost cutting was for journalists to “Work harder, not smarter” or “Do more with less.” But by that time, with a newsroom basically cut in half, the reality was “Doing less with less, and charging customers more.”

Nearly 10 years later, the continued death by a thousand cuts across the journalism world have continued, and we are at a tipping point. On Monday, The Chicago Sun-Times left its front page blank in a plea for subscribers in an effort to “protect the long-term survival” of its newsroom.

The Denver Post made a similar plea earlier this month, after one-third of its staff were laid off, demanding that its owners sell the newspaper. Hard-working Daily Camera reporter Alex Burness tweeted this week: “The stories being told now about the Post could be told about all of these newsrooms, just on different scales. National media reporters would do well to check out what’s happened in Boulder, Canon City, Longmont, Loveland, Sterling, Julesburg, Lamar, Broomfield, Brush.”

What’s Next for Journalism?

There’s the non-profit model, or the pay-wall model for digital news or the billionaire-backed model, or any combination of all three. As the shakedown continues, people are more and more realizing what the world looks like without the print media. There are city council meetings that aren’t being covered, feature stories that define the fabric of communities that aren’t being shared and checks and balances on our democratic way of life that aren’t being made.

As we grapple with this change, I have become keenly aware that in most instances news coverage originates from the print media. And the news is a commodity and just like anything else of value, you have to pay for it. The biggest question now is whether our news-obsessed culture will realize this as well.